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View Full Version : Why Isn't Thornton A Starter?


shingo10
04-24-2010, 12:09 PM
It's pretty clear that he is the most dominating pitcher on the staff and with the Cubs setting the precedent with moving Big Z to the bullpen, we could just switch places with Thornton and Peavy. What do you think?

Yes, this thread is a joke.

october23sp
04-24-2010, 12:18 PM
:tealpolice::tealtutor:

WhiteSoxFTW
04-24-2010, 12:22 PM
It's pretty clear that he is the most dominating pitcher on the staff and with the Cubs setting the precedent with moving Big Z to the bullpen, we could just switch places with Thornton and Peavy. What do you think?

Yes, this thread is a joke.

And I good chance it is destined for the roadhouse, lol.

chisox616
04-24-2010, 12:27 PM
Actually, I've done a couple of fantasy drafts in MLB 2k10, and Thornton always ends up a starter on some teams. So there's that...?

WhiteSoxFTW
04-24-2010, 12:33 PM
Actually, I've done a couple of fantasy drafts in MLB 2k10, and Thornton always ends up a starter on some teams. So there's that...?

Yeah, come to think of it, the Indians started Rafael Perez against me in a game of Baseball Mogul. My White Sox team got 7 in the first inning. :tongue:

Brian26
04-24-2010, 12:55 PM
It's pretty clear that he is the most dominating pitcher on the staff and with the Cubs setting the precedent with moving Big Z to the bullpen, we could just switch places with Thornton and Peavy. What do you think?

Yes, this thread is a joke.

It's not as radical of an idea as you may think. Long term, there's no reason to keep as talented of an arm as Thornton has in the bullpen. He's shown over the past year that he can be durable. If the Sox decided to stretch him out, I think Thornton has a future as a starter.

Of course, for the immediate time, you set up your staff based on your strengths. Long term, depending on the development of Santos and Hudson, Jenks' contract situation, and Putz effectiveness and health, Thornton to the starting staff should be considered.

Brian26
04-24-2010, 12:56 PM
And I good chance it is destined for the roadhouse, lol.

You don't decide, so ease up on the arm-chair moderating. Thanks.

mzh
04-24-2010, 01:03 PM
Thornton was originally drafted as a starter (1st round, in fact), and failed to do very well as a starter above AA. I don't know if his success here is because coop fixed 'em, or if he found his niche as a setup man, but if its the former then maybe this is a viable idea(if we already didn't have 6 starters)!.

TDog
04-24-2010, 01:09 PM
It's not as radical of an idea as you may think. Long term, there's no reason to keep as talented of an arm as Thornton has in the bullpen. He's shown over the past year that he can be durable. If the Sox decided to stretch him out, I think Thornton has a future as a starter.

Of course, for the immediate time, you set up your staff based on your strengths. Long term, depending on the development of Santos and Hudson, Jenks' contract situation, and Putz effectiveness and health, Thornton to the starting staff should be considered.

As fans we really can't tell if Thornton can maintain the stuff to go through the lineup more than once, given a starter's rest. And a successful starter will have to see hitters three times in a game. A few pitchers have made the transition from being a top reliever to a top starter. Wilbur Wood (who I believe is only one of two pitchers to record 20 saves before recording 20 wins as a starter), immediately comes to mind, but, of course he threw a knuckleball.

There was talk at one time about Damaso Marte having a great future with the Sox, perhaps with the ability to be a great starter. I don't know if he was considered more valuable as a reliever who could pitch almost every day or whether he was ultimately considered not suited for starting. Marte, though, didn't even sustain his brilliance out of the bullpen as Thornton has.

It is more common to see struggling starters move to the bullpen than to have elite starters move into the starting rotation. But as far as Thornton is concerned, fans aren't really equipped to definitively make such a call.

Huisj
04-24-2010, 01:31 PM
Very good (but fairly straight) fastball, ok hard slider, and what else? As a tall lefty with an effortless motion, those pitches work great in short spurts to get guys out in late innings, but would that stuff keep fooling people two or three times through the lineup?

Brian26
04-24-2010, 01:32 PM
There was talk at one time about Damaso Marte having a great future with the Sox, perhaps with the ability to be a great starter.

Neal Cotts too, but Jerry Manual and that trip to Yankee Stadium somewhat derailed that idea.

slavko
04-24-2010, 05:17 PM
Very good (but fairly straight) fastball, ok hard slider, and what else? As a tall lefty with an effortless motion, those pitches work great in short spurts to get guys out in late innings, but would that stuff keep fooling people two or three times through the lineup?

There's your problem. But it's fun to talk.

Tragg
04-24-2010, 06:48 PM
It's not as radical of an idea as you may think. Long term, there's no reason to keep as talented of an arm as Thornton has in the bullpen. He's shown over the past year that he can be durable. If the Sox decided to stretch him out, I think Thornton has a future as a starter.

Of course, for the immediate time, you set up your staff based on your strengths. Long term, depending on the development of Santos and Hudson, Jenks' contract situation, and Putz effectiveness and health, Thornton to the starting staff should be considered.

If the Sox are out of it at the All Star break, I think we should try it.

I remember clammoring for starting Foulke, but nobody did - Sox, As, Boston

canOcorn
04-24-2010, 07:45 PM
1.5 pitch pitchers rarely, if ever, have success as starting pitchers. :shrug:

Frater Perdurabo
04-24-2010, 09:26 PM
Why mess with success?

Also, isn't Thornton 34? If he was 27 I could see an argument being made to try it, but at this point he's one of the top set-up men in the game.

He's also the only truly effective left-handed reliever on the Sox. And the Sox already have two lefties in the starting rotation.

TDog
04-24-2010, 09:36 PM
If the Sox are out of it at the All Star break, I think we should try it.

I remember clammoring for starting Foulke, but nobody did - Sox, As, Boston

The Giants did. They started him in 8 games before trading him to the White Sox in 1997. Foulke was 1-5 for the Giants. After moving to the White Sox, he went 3-0 with 3 saves, pitching exclusively in relief. And his ERA was about 5 runs lower with the White Sox.

Tragg
04-24-2010, 09:44 PM
The Giants did. They started him in 8 games before trading him to the White Sox in 1997. Foulke was 1-5 for the Giants. After moving to the White Sox, he went 3-0 with 3 saves, pitching exclusively in relief. And his ERA was about 5 runs lower with the White Sox.
He was a bad reliever for SF too.
And he definitely was better with the Sox than with the Giants.

I didn't realize Thornton was already 34. Too late to start him no.

WhiteSoxFTW
04-26-2010, 02:51 PM
Thornton, himself, in several interviews, has talked about being sore and the amount of innings he threw last year. Ozzie tries hard not to overuse Thornton.

None of that sounds like a starter to me.

BadBobbyJenks
04-26-2010, 05:12 PM
Wow I had no idea he was 34 already.

He is basically a 1 pitch pitcher, that isn't going to fly for 6 innings a night.

TDog
04-26-2010, 05:27 PM
Thornton, himself, in several interviews, has talked about being sore and the amount of innings he threw last year. Ozzie tries hard not to overuse Thornton.

None of that sounds like a starter to me.

It sounds like that would exclude Thornton from being the primary closer as well.

PalehosePlanet
04-26-2010, 07:06 PM
Actually a much better argument can be made for Jenks starting: He has four pitches, and two of them plus pitches (fastball & curveball.)

mzh
04-26-2010, 08:41 PM
Actually a much better argument can be made for Jenks starting: He has four pitches, and two of them plus pitches (fastball & curveball.)
Yes, but stretched over 5-6 innings that fastball is less of a plus, I doubt he can throw 96 all night.

Tragg
04-26-2010, 08:51 PM
Actually a much better argument can be made for Jenks starting: He has four pitches, and two of them plus pitches (fastball & curveball.)
That's an interesting idea.

TDog
04-26-2010, 09:26 PM
Yes, but stretched over 5-6 innings that fastball is less of a plus, I doubt he can throw 96 all night.

You don't know what he would be able to do with a starter's regular rest, but before the White Sox picked him up, he was exclusively a starter in the Angels system -- 70 games with 68 starts, both his relief appearances coming in the Pioneer League shortly after he signed. Both were middle relief.

The White Sox picked him up before the 2005 season, and he pitched in 35 games in Birmingham, all in relief. He finished 32 of the 35 games he appeared in before the Sox called him up and made him the closer on a World Series winning team.

Jenks' lack of success as a starter led the Angels to place him on waivers. The White Sox took a chance on him and immediately turned him into a closer. You don't know if Jenks' added maturity -- some of his pre-White Sox problems have been documented -- would make him a better starter now.

It might be an intriguing idea, but I doubt the White Sox are contemplating it.

Frater Perdurabo
04-26-2010, 10:17 PM
The Sox have such a deep starting rotation, with Hudson waiting in the wings, and Torres with starting experience, that there's no reason even to entertain the idea of making Thornton or Jenks a starter.

Tragg
04-26-2010, 10:24 PM
The Sox have such a deep starting rotation, with Hudson waiting in the wings, and Torres with starting experience, that there's no reason even to entertain the idea of making Thornton or Jenks a starter.
Well, there's nothing wrong with an excess of starters....they're great in trade if you have nowhere to pitch them.
I think the idea of starting Jenks also has a lot to do with what appears to be a decline in his effectiveness as a reliever.
But as said above, it's highly doubtful the Sox are or will contemplate it.

Frater Perdurabo
04-26-2010, 10:48 PM
Well, there's nothing wrong with an excess of starters....they're great in trade if you have nowhere to pitch them.
I think the idea of starting Jenks also has a lot to do with what appears to be a decline in his effectiveness as a reliever.
But as said above, it's highly doubtful the Sox are or will contemplate it.

No, there's nothing wrong with having too many starters, but at the same time I think the potential reward does not justify the risk. If the Sox needed a fifth, or worse, a fourth starter, then it's something to consider. But there's no reason to weaken the bullpen just to have a seventh starter.

canOcorn
04-26-2010, 10:55 PM
You don't know what he would be able to do with a starter's regular rest, but before the White Sox picked him up, he was exclusively a starter in the Angels system -- 70 games with 68 starts, both his relief appearances coming in the Pioneer League shortly after he signed. Both were middle relief.

The White Sox picked him up before the 2005 season, and he pitched in 35 games in Birmingham, all in relief. He finished 32 of the 35 games he appeared in before the Sox called him up and made him the closer on a World Series winning team.

Jenks' lack of success as a starter led the Angels to place him on waivers. The White Sox took a chance on him and immediately turned him into a closer. You don't know if Jenks' added maturity -- some of his pre-White Sox problems have been documented -- would make him a better starter now.

It might be an intriguing idea, but I doubt the White Sox are contemplating it.

It wasn't Jenks' lack of success as a starter that led the Angels to release him. He was replaced on the 40 man roster by a one, Morales, Kendry. That said, he shouldn't be used as a starting pitcher. There's a limited amount of innings left in his pitching elbow (that was already repaired, once, with pins) and it's best used in short stints out of the bullpen.

TDog
04-26-2010, 11:07 PM
It wasn't Jenks' lack of success as a starter that led the Angels to release him. He was replaced on the 40 man roster by a one, Morales, Kendry. That said, he shouldn't be used as a starting pitcher. There's a limited amount of innings left in his pitching elbow (that was already repaired, once, with pins) and it's best used in short stints out of the bullpen.

Perhaps, but the Angels only used him as a starter, and except for a great 2003 season in AA where they got less than 90 innings out of him, he wasn't didn't have much success.

PennStater98r
04-27-2010, 05:33 PM
Yeah, come to think of it, the Indians started Rafael Perez against me in a game of Baseball Mogul. My White Sox team got 7 in the first inning. :tongue:

Which version of Mogul do you have? I love that game!

I pulled together a 125 win season once. :)

Of course it was 1923ish - and my franchise had been going since 1911 - I had traded for Ruth, and Joe Jackson with Happy Felsch (drafted) finishing out my OF. Traded for Collins a few years prior to that, I had quite a few errors, but the production was like nothing I'd seen. I still had Cicotte, Walter Johnson (who was lit up in '20 and '21 and offered to me in '22 for a prospect I drafted -might have heard of him Al Simmons) and Ed Walsh was still dinking around in my bullpen (since about 1915).